Clothes, Consumerism

The number became a brand

Back when I worked at Hattams (mid 80s to early 90s), we stocked Levi's jeans, primarily the 555 "red tabs", but also the 517 "boot cut". The numbers were Levi's product codes. The first digit 5 signified they were for adult men's -- my recollection is that the "student" (kids/young men up to a size 81 cm/32") sizes in red tabs were 855. We didn't stock women's jeans, but they seemed to be a


Selling shoes

So, those very nice but badly sized Ecco shoes I bought a couple of months ago... I'm finally selling them on eBay: I bought these shoes recently. I wore them a couple of times and then realised I'd made a huge mistake: I had got the wrong size. Could I return them to the shop? No, not really - there's now a teensy bit of wear on them - not noticeable under normal conditions, but enough to make

Clothes, Consumerism

I hate buying shoes

I'm good at some things, and bad at others. One of the things I'm worst at is buying shoes. I hate it, I'm not good at it, and while I don't always stuff it up, it seems like I certainly do sometimes. I went to replace my Ecco shoes. They've been great; have lasted many years, but are finally on the way out. The old ones: European size 44, which is theoretically about what I wear in Austr


I must be getting old

From a blog on the Australian Jewish News web site: Recently I was on a bus and a young man got on in front of me wearing very low-slung jeans, so low in fact that his gutkes showed above the jeans. I was sure that his jeans were going to fall off and I was just about to call out, "Excuse me young man, I think you are in danger of losing your hoysen!" But I thought better of it and stopp


Globalised fashion

How is it that the suit and tie is almost global? With the exception of military leaders and some of those guys in the South Pacific who wear skirts, just about every male politician from every country in the world wears one, for instance, and they all look almost identical. As it happens, I need a new suit or two. Some of my work wear is past its use by date -- not necessarily worn out, bu

Clothes, Home life

Secondhand clothes

Should I feel guilty for buying my kids secondhand school clothes? They're in very good condition -- no doubt donated by kids who have legitimately had no use for them anymore because they've grown or left the school. $2 per item, about 90% cheaper than buying new. Reduce, re-use, recycle, right? So I'm covering 2 Rs and saving money. Yet because it's not something I've tried before, I've got l


Windsor knot

My dad didn't wear ties during the later part of his working life, and certainly doesn't now he's retired. So I was taught to tie a tie by Norm, who worked at Hattams in Elsternwick when we bought my first school uniform for Melbourne High, in summer '84-'85. I've been thinking for a while about switching from a Pratt Knot to a Windsor Knot, the latter apparently resulting in a bigger, more sym